Tuesday, August 3, 2021

School starts amid COVID surge, hospitals begin requiring staff vaccinations as capacity nears, Maui councilwoman on extended medical leave, more news from all the Hawaiian Islands

Gov. David Ige press conference Aug. 2, 2021

Safety guidelines urged by Gov. David Ige as Hawaii public school begins. The union representing 13,500 Hawaii public school teachers asked Gov. David Ige to postpone the start of school for elementary-age students due to the spike in COVID-19 cases, but it was rebuffed. Instead, Ige joined interim schools Superintendent Keith Hayashi and state Health Director Libby Char at a news conference Monday to say that in-person learning is critical to the academic and social success and well-being of the 175,000 students set to begin school this morning. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Tribune-Herald. Garden Island. Hawaii News Now. KITV4. KHON2.

Governors race: Lt. Gov. Josh Green raised more than $400,000 this year, bringing his campaign war chest to $600K In Campaign Cash More Than A Year Before Election Day. Former Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell raised $9,000 during the first half of this year for a total of $509,000. Civil Beat.

New Reports Show Campaign Cash Is Flowing In To Hawaii’s Elected US Officials. Hawaii Sen. Brian Schatz continues to add to his bankroll in advance of the 2022 election although he has yet to draw a challenger. Civil Beat.

Hawaii Has A Ban On Sunscreen Chemicals But No One’s Sure Who Should Enforce It. Selling sunscreens containing oxybenzone and octinoxate became illegal this year, but lawmakers are relying on sellers to self-police and consumers to hold them accountable. Civil Beat.

Delta variant surge has had little impact on tourism. At a Monday meeting of the House Committee on COVID-19 Economic and Financial Preparedness, state officials and visitor industry representatives discussed the effects — or lack thereof — the current outbreak in the state has had on the recovery of the visitor industry. Tribune-Herald. Garden Island. KHON2.

Major Hawaii hospitals announce COVID-19 vaccine mandates for employees. Employees of four of Hawaii’s major hospital systems, including Hawaii Pacific Health, Kaiser Permanente, The Queen’s Health Systems and Adventist Health Castle, are now required to get the COVID- 19 vaccine, according to mandates announced Monday by health care executives. Star-Advertiser. Civil Beat. Tribune-Herald. Big Island Now. Hawaii News Now. KITV4.

Lt. Gov. reports 150 COVID patients are in Hawaii hospitals, majority unvaccinated. The Queen’s Medical Center and other hospitals have asked for extra support to relieve exhausted nurses and doctors. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii reports 365 new coronavirus infections as delta variant surge continues.
The new confirmed and probable infection count reported today includes 222 new cases on Oahu, 76 on Hawaii Island, 44 on Maui, 14 on Kauai, and nine Hawaii residents diagnosed outside of the state. Star-Advertiser.


Commission again extends deadline in search for Honolulu police chief. The 24 people who applied to serve as Honolulu’s 12th police chief have been informed whether they met the minimum qualifications, and the deadline to hire a consultant to pick the finalists for Honolulu police commissioners and the public to consider was extended again, to 4:30 p.m. Friday. Star-Advertiser.

Gerard Puana pursues civil lawsuit.
Two years after federal criminal conspiracy convictions of former Honolulu Police Chief Louis Kealoha and his wife, the victim in the case is still pursuing damages from the city and several former law enforcement officers in civil court. Star-Advertiser.

Kamehameha Schools Kapalama requiring COVID vaccine for athletes, coaches. COVID vaccines will be a requirement for student athletes at Kamehameha Schools Kapalama. Hawaii News Now.

Oahu organic delivery service growing as a business. Some small organic local farmers are getting a boost to business, from a growing Oahu food delivery service. KITV4.

Residents honor Kaneohe Beach Park’s place in Hawaiian history. Hundreds of years ago, Kaneohe Beach Park, also known as Naoneala‘a a Kane­ohe, was the site of two major Hawaiian historic events: a peace­- making ceremony and the marking of a new chief on Oahu. Star-Advertiser.

Hawaii Island

Firefighters continue to battle Hawaii Island’s largest fire. Firefighters appear to have gotten the upper hand on a more than 40,000-acre wildland fire in South Kohala deemed the largest in Hawaii Island history. West Hawaii Today. Big Island Video News. Big Island Now. Star-Advertiser.


Mayor’s Request for Delay of In-Classroom Learning Fails to Gain Governor’s Support. Health officials say there will be an “inevitable rise in cases” no matter when schools reopen. Maui Now.

Councilmember Tasha Kama on Extended Medical Leave. Maui County Councilmember Tasha Kama is on extended medical leave, according to an announcement issued on Monday evening. Maui Now.

Court Limits A&B East Maui Stream Diversion. A Hawaii judge has ordered Alexander & Baldwin to significantly reduce the amount of water it diverts from east Maui streams for agricultural purposes. Civil Beat.


Zina: Officers not there as enforcers. Kaua‘i Police Department officers are returning to the island’s three public high schools following temporary reassignment at the height of the pandemic. Garden Island.

Waimea 400 Talk Story at library. The Waimea Public Library will host another talk story event concerning the Waimea 400 project Wednesday, Aug. 4, providing an opportunity for community members to share their thoughts and ideas in person. Garden Island.

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